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Doctor Who: The Continuity of One

By

Ion Light

1

Copyright © 2018 by Ion Light

EHP: Experimental Home Publishing

“Dr. Who: the Continuity of One.” version 1.4. April 29th, 2018.

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law, or by that guy who is it taking it to his boss saying, I want to make this movie, that would be like totally okay; caveat YOU MENTION ME! For permission requests, email the publisher “Experimental Home Publishing.”

This book is a fan fiction dedicated to Doctor Who, and all of those who have participated in this, directly or indirectly. Those of you who have followed my ‘I/Tulpa’ series, starting with “Not Here,” will probably find this a quaint departure from the usual adventure and debauchery, though I suspect you’ll find enough allusions that knowing the characters Jon and Loxy will at least give you a good chuckle. For those of you who have never met J@L, I highly recommend you start with ‘Not Here.’ You could, of course, start with any of the ‘I/Tulpa’ series, as Doctor Who characters have certainly influenced all of my writing, some more directly than others. Specifically, if you want more information on Tulpas, Wonderlands, and Doctor Who, from the perspective of Jon and Loxy, I recommend ‘I/Tulpa: And the Worlds of Crossover. It is the first I/Tulpa story, divergence from ‘Not Here.’

Where possible, I have added real life reports of what appears to be temporal anomalies. If you want more, and better written, I highly recommend ‘The Daemon,’ by Anthony Peake, as it is full of references. It is my personal belief, time travel happens all the time, and I live my life as if I am just one 1979 penny away from unraveling my entire world-line.

I assure you, there will be grammatical errors. I apologize in advance. I am working on doing better. I have marginally improved. Feel free to email me any corrections of complaints. My knowledge of Doctor Who trivia is not as sound as my Star Trek trivia. I am simply a modest fan, who finds himself caught up in the whirlwinds of imagination on a daily basis.

Sincerely

Ion Light

214-907-4070

solarchariot@gmail.com

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Chapter 1

Austin, Texas. The Barbarella Bar was usually packed. The fact that it wasn’t was one of those

things that gave Jon Harister pause. His neck hair stood, and he shuddered as he fought the mood

shift that normally came when he experienced Déjà vu. He was wearing dark jeans, a black

turtleneck t-shirt, and an army green jacket that had once been attached to an “Abercrombie and

Fitch” tag. The tag had been removed. He had an old army, World War II mail bag for a purse

that said “MASH” but the number wasn’t quite so clear. Most people saw 4077th. One of the

items in it was a book, “Anomalies In Time,” he had picked up at a Half Price book. He had been

reading a curious fact that any time there had been a train accident, there had been an unusual

drop in passenger counts, as if people subliminally knew not to get on that train the day of the

incident. There were lots of curious fact like that in the book. Take the Titanic for example. Next to 9/11, the Bombs dropped on Japan, and Fukashima, the Titanic had the largest volume of

written artifacts where friends and or loved ones had received letters begging them not to take

the Titanic. There were even people who had written about their dreams in which they were

being warned by their subconscious not to take the Titanic. Some went, never to return. Some

men assured their families survived, but only because their dream placed them just where they

needed to be to ensure placement on a life raft; most of the heads of households went down with

the ship. Some people canceled their trips all together, and wondered what was it that changed

their minds, and even their friends and family had told them prior that they were just being

superstitious, go on your trip, make history.

Loxy Isadora Bliss, a tulpa, invisible to all the world but Jon, was suddenly by his side,

slipping her arm in his. She was inspiration. She was love. She glowed with an aura like a muse

lifted straight from the all painting in the opening of Xanadu. She had the appearance of being

half his age but in actual years was probably two years old. Tulpa years do not equal human

years. In truth, human physical age rarely corresponds to human mental age. She had the

enthusiasm of a child, the intellect of a really smart adult, and she was much wiser than he at age 50. She was a straight hair brunette, and her hair was cropped short. Her eyes were bright, and

the eye line shared the smile with the mouth. She was excited about being out an about and the

opportunity to meet new people, if it was vicariously through Jon. She was also subtly aware of

something, something she couldn’t identify.

“You feel that?” She asked.

3

“Yeah,” Jon said. “That feeling we have done this before. It’s creeping me out.”

“Why did you come here, then?” Loxy asked.

“I don’t know,” Jon said.

“That makes what, the fourth compulsion to do something out of your norm this week?”

Loxy asked.

“So, let’s break it. What wouldn’t I do?” Jon asked.

“Oh, you would never go over to those girls at the bar and introduce yourself,” Loxy said.

There were two particularly young, and interesting looking girls sitting together having a

drink. And she’s was right, he would not approach them. “Because they’re lesbians?”

“Oh, no, because you don’t have the balls,” Loxy said.

“I most certainly do,” Jon said.

“Prove it,” Loxy said.

“Um, no, let’s just go over there,” Jon said, pointing towards booth against the far wall. It

seemed darker by the booth. It was as if all the light in the bar had gathered around the two girls.

He had the strangest thought that he was in a real life ‘Dragon’s Lair” game. Entertaining the

thought, he could imagine the blond dressed like Princess Daphne. He was definitely not Dirk.

“Switch with me, and I’ll go introduce ourselves to the ladies,” Loxy said. ‘Switching’

was a term tulpamancers used for switching personalities, allowing the tulpa to front.

The lights flared. No one seemed to notice. All sound in the bar whooshed away, as if he

were in a movie and the sound had been cut. No, not cut, muffled through a tunnel. Beer coming

out of a faucet seemed to be coming out of the tap in slow motion. Loxy seemed suddenly

remote. A waitress was frozen in mid swing, looking odd as if she were out of balance. Her skit

was frozen in a flare. The empty tray was separated from her fingers, and he imagined it might

flip and get caught as she headed away. The sound of music was no longer music, but single

chord, evolving so slowly to the next cord that it seem ghostly. He felt as if he was stuck in this moment for days, but he slowly felt momentum carrying towards the two females Even as he

approached the two females, they appeared to be getting up to leave.

“Going already?” Jon asked.

“Yeah,” the brunette said.

4

Loxy backed up to the bar and hopped up. She was wearing a miniskirt and cowboy boots, and a red button up blouse that she had tied just above her navel. She made no apparent signs

that she was aware that the bar had come to a stop.

“Excuse us,” the blond said.

“Wait wait wait, just one moment,” Jon said, almost sounding frantic. And, in a way, he

was. He was feeling an urgency to delay them, without the knowledge of why.

“Not interested,” the Blond said, taking her friend by the arm. He thought to himself, she

would never say that to Dirk.

“Two minutes of your time in order for me to practice being a psychic,” Jon said. “I will

buy both of you a drink of your choice.”

“Psychic?” the brunette asked.

“That’s the best pick up line you got?” the blond asked.

“Not a pick up line. Just pushing past my comfort zone, and even if I fall flat on my face,

you get a free drink. Two minutes?” Jon said.

The two ladies exchanged looks, and sat back down at their chairs. Jon took a fifty dollar

bill out of his wallet and pushed it to the waiter. The girls ordered. They turned back to him. Jon looked to Loxy. She shrugged and smiled.

“So, go ahead,” the blond said. “Impress us.”

Jon bit his lip and tried to communicate to Loxy with his eyes that he wanted some help.

The bartender thought he was wanting his attention.

“You need to hold my hand?” the brunette asked.

Jon stepped back. “No, no touching,” Jon said, holding both hands up to gesture a

boundary. “I am struggling to remember how this goes.”

“Remember?” the brunette asked.

“Did you ever see Groundhog Day?” Jon asked.

“That’s like old,” the blond said. “Like you.”

“Oh, no, that’s a like a classic,” Jon said. He pointed to the brunette. “Eight years old. A

dog named Sparky.”

“No,” the brunette laughed.

“Chalky,” Loxy said.

5

“Chalky?” Jon asked Loxy, not caring that the girls were following his eyes to no one there. “Who would name a dog Chalky?”

“How did you know my cat’s name?” the brunette asked.

“Are you talking to someone?” the blond asked, leaning up to look over the bar.

If there was someone behind the bar, the bartender walked over them as he brought the

drinks.

“So, I have your attention,” Jon said.

“Yes,” the brunette said.

“No,” the blond said.

“Look, I need to leave, I need you to stay at the bar,” Jon said. “For exactly five minutes.”

“What?” the brunette asked.

“Give her the list,” Loxy said.

“Oh,” Jon said, pulling a piece a paper out of his bag. He handed it to the blond. “This is a

list of all the items in your purse. For every item you pull out of your purse that is not on this list, I will give you fifty dollars, provided you are still here when I come back in five minutes.”

Jon backed away from the bar, motioning them to stay, emphasizing five minutes. He

paused.

“Blue or green?” he asked the brunette.

“What?” the brunette asked.

“Pick one. Blue or green?” Jon asked again.

“Blue,” the brunette said.

He turned and walked quickly outside of the bar. The air felt better outside, as there was a

slight breeze. Loxy came through the door and caught up to them.

“They’re actually staying this time,” Loxy said. “Now what?”

“I don’t know. We never get this far…”

“Then why the blue or green?” Loxy asked.

A white cat jumped up onto a public trashcan and meowed.

“Chalky’s a cat!” Loxy said.

Jon rushed to the trashcan. The cat ran away. Peering in the trashcan revealed a

homemade pipe bomb. Jon wanted to run away, but he reached into the trash and pulled out the

bomb. He wasn’t sure how long he held it, trying to understand it. An expert would probably find

6

it crude, but to him, it looked pretty damn scary. Two patrol officers on Segways turned and accelerated towards him. Jon reached for the green wire, even as the law enforcement were

dismounting, drawing their weapons. Behind them, someone stepped out of the shadow of a

truck; the man had a weapon. Jon saw him in his periphery vision, but didn’t give him much

mind, as the bomb preoccupied him; he assumed the gunman was pointing at the law

enforcement. The bomb was the only real thing at the moment, and everything else was in slow

motion, and distant. He was pretty sure the officers were shouting. Shots were fired. Jon pulled

the green wire from the device just as a bullet ripped through his shoulder; the bullet did not

come from law enforcement, but from the guy at the truck. Law enforcement fired at the

gunman, and he went down.

Jon found himself sitting on the ground, the bomb still in his hands. His left hand was

trembling. One of the officers was pointing a weapon at him, the other was holstering his weapon

so he could take the device and set it down. He heard them calling for an ambulance. Several

police cars arrived, coming to a halt on the side walk. Loxy sat down next to him.

“I am confused. I thought she said the blue one,” Loxy said.

“Yeah,” Jon said. “I was asking which one I don’t pull.”

“Oh, well, that makes sense,” Loxy said.

A man approached the officers and showed them identification. They helped Jon to his

feet, and the man took over, leading him away towards an ambulance that had just arrived.

Directly behind the ambulance, on the street corner, was a 1950’s Police Box. Jon was escorted

into the box. The door closed behind them.

“Sit here,” the man said, helping him to sit on the steps. The man ran towards a box and

started rummaging through it. “Come on, I know I put you in here.”

“Jon?” Loxy said, having followed them in. She continued past into the control room.

“Are you seeing this?”

“I think am going into shock,” Jon said.

“Uh?” the man said. “Oh! No, no, it’s just a flesh wound. The perfect Hollywood wound

that will make people have sympathy for you, but not life threatening in any way. Well, not life

threatening unless we do something. But don’t worry. Today is your lucky day. Yes! Here it is.”

He brought the clam shell looking device over to Jon. “I’ve always wanted to use this. Never

really had the chance.”

7

The device clamped over the shoulder, capturing both sides of the body, both the entry and exit wound. The man tightened it down by turning nob. Jon barely even grimaced. The man

went to push the button, but paused.

“You can trust me. I am the Doctor,” he said, maintaining eye contact the whole wile.

“This isn’t going to hurt. Well, it shouldn’t hurt much. To be honest, I really don’t know if it’s going to hurt, so an accurate report would be very helpful to whether I use it again in the future.”

Loxy came closer to watch the procedure, kneeling and touching his knees. “I think he’s

okay.”

The Doctor didn’t miss the eyes traveling to someone not there, the wave of comfort that

erased frown lines, and then eyes returning to his with a final nod of acceptance. The Doctor

activated the device. Jon seemed confused. He bit his lip. Even Loxy had to stand up, her hands

going to her forehead. “Oh, that’s just lovely,” she thought. She staggered to the rail, clutching it for support. “OMG.” Jon’s eyes rolled back into his head and he fell back.

“Really?” the Doctor complained, pulling out his sonic screw driver. “They promised me

no pain cure.” The Doctor bit his lip. “Oh.”

The clam shell device chimed and popped off the shoulder. Jon lay there, euphoric.

Loxy’s breathing normalized.

“Do that again,” Loxy said.

“That’s enough,” Jon said.

“Yep, all done,” the Doctor said, clearly seeing the wound was healed. The Doctor picked

up the device to examine it closer. “It’s Kastrian made, but supposed to be Universal. Still, not a bad side effect, I suppose. Could be worse, eh? Not completely unexpected, I suppose. You can’t

have that much positive, regenerative energy exciting all the cells, and not expect total system

thresholds to be exceeded.”

“I am surprised there aren’t more of those on the market,” Loxy said.

8

Chapter 2

“Alright then, all better, off you go,” The Doctor said.

Jon got up to leave, noticed his book had fallen out of his bag, put it back in, turned

towards the exit, and was even taking a step forwards as he felt the hole in his shirt. He stopped.

“Yeah, sorry, it only mends flesh,” The Doctor said.

“It’s just that,” Jon said, his voice trailing. He was avoiding the Doctor’s eyes, as if he

were afraid to look again. It was as if he didn’t want to know the face, or as if he needed to forget all of this and go about his mundane life that was increasingly anything but. He was staring

towards the door. It seemed miles away.

“Oh, go ahead. Ask. I’ve been waiting for you to do so,” the Doctor said.

“It’s really peculiar, when you think about it,” Jon said.

“You’ll feel better if you just speak it,” the Doctor said.

“I have been having a really queer day,” Jon said.

“You should really clarify that,” Loxy said.

He held a finger at her as if signaling her to give him a moment to process his thoughts.

“Not queer like LGBT, but queer like strange,” Jon said.

“I love strange,” the Doctor said. “Strange is my middle name.”

Jon found it curious that the Doctor and Loxy were orbiting him, as if they had to be on

opposing sides. The Doctor held a device with green light as he orbited, as if looking for

something. “So, today, of all days, I have been overwhelmed by feelings of déjà vu.”

“I get it all the time, it’ll pass,” the Doctor assured him.

“It drove me to a used book store. Out of a thousand books I found one that called to me,

and a dog ear on the page that had me reading the one page I needed to see to move forwards in

life. I felt extremely satisfied, but then I had this compulsion to go to a bar,” Jon continued. “And I never go to bars.”

“That’s not true,” Loxy said.

“Correction, I seldom go to bars, because I don’t drink,” Jon corrected.

“Not precise,” Loxy corrected.

“More accurately, I drink very little,” Jon said.

“Fair enough, move this along to the question,” the Doctor said.

9

Jon looked at him a bit cross. “You’re rushing me,” Jon said. “Where was I?”

“You drink very little,” Loxy said.

“How is that relevant?” Jon asked.

“You’re asking me?” the Doctor asked.

“It isn’t,” Loxy said simultaneously with the Doctor’s question.

“Okay, wait, so I entered this bar,” Jon said.

“It sounds like the setup of a joke,” Doctor and Loxy both said simultaneously. Loxy

peered around Jon to the Doctor, baffled but amused with him.

“If you’re going to make fun of me,” Jon said.

“Please, continue,” the Doctor said.

“I entered, I saw these two women, and there was this flash of light,” Jon said. “No,

bigger than light. Sustained lightening. It was as if everything was luminescent. Not a single

shadow in the room. As if, every object, every person, was cut from a movie that wasn’t my

movie but imposed upon my reality frame…”

“Kind of like a beautiful mind,” Loxy said.

“She kind of looked like Jennifer Connelly,” Jon said.

“The brunette? Yeah, I noticed that,” the Doctor said.

“You saw a beautiful mind?” Jon asked.

“No, but I know Doctor Nash. I hang out with a lot of physicists,” the Doctor said. “Do

you have a question?”

“Yeah, it was given to me,” Jon said.

“It was given to you?” the Doctor asked.

“The world lit up. Just for an instant, but it felt like an extended epiphany,” Jon said. “In

that moment I saw all these permutations. No, I think I lived all of these permutations. No. That doesn’t make sense. I would have had to have died a hundred time before getting that right.”

“Or a thousand,” Loxy said. “But who’s counting.”

“Could both be real?” Jon asked. Again, the door seemed so far away. Loxy and the

Doctor seemed bigger than life.

“A probability wave?” the Doctor asked.

“Tell us the question,” Loxy said.

“You didn’t hear the question?” Jon asked.

10

“No,” Loxy said.

“You haven’t told me yet,” the Doctor said.

“Curious. I heard this voice, that was not my voice ask me, ‘if it were given, what would

you do with eternity?’” Jon asked.

“Oh!” the Doctor exclaimed. “What a brilliant question. What did you answer?”

“Uh?” Jon asked.

“You have a moment in time where you hit transcendence, you hear a voice asking you

the most peculiar question of your life, and your response was?” the Doctor asked.

“I didn’t have one,” Jon said.

“Seriously?” the Doctor asked.

“Yeah, and then it was over, and I found myself trying to chat up the two girls, favoring

the Jennifer Connelly doppelganger. The blond was kind of mean; not that she was obligated to

be nice. Probably just trying to save time, like New York direct. That’s not mean and I am sure I came off a bit creepy….”

“You do that sometimes,” Loxy said.

“But I couldn’t even engage them correctly, because the urgency to go disarm the bomb,

which, come to think of it, I knew there was a bomb, but I kept forgetting that fact. It’s like if a girl came up and gave you her phone number on the condition that you remember it without

writing it, but you suck at holding numbers in your head, and so the one chance to meet the

perfect girl is just over because you suck at remembering numbers, unless you can memorize

with your finger, because the fingers remember things, like playing Moonlight Sonata. The

whole thing is weird because, all the while, I knew sort of what needed to be done, but there

were these distractions, like the two girls, but had I not chatted them up, I am pretty confident they would have died,” Jon said.

“You could have died,” the Doctor said.

“Yeah, but here’s the thing, Doctor,” Jon said. “I don’t run. I am not very clever. And, I

tend to forget things. Tomorrow, I probably won’t even remember this.”

“Well, Sir, I think your luck has changed,” the Doctor said. “Because, I do run. Quite a

bit actually. And I am very clever. That’s not boasting, either. And I never forget. Well, no, I

rarely forget. Sometimes self-induced amnesia helps you from purposely contradicting yourself

from over thinking a thing. So, what do you say? Fancy a trip through time and space?”

11

“Sorry. What?” Jon asked.

“You, Sir, are doing something weird, but you are reading the perfect book for the perfect

encounter, and I think this is important,” the Doctor said.

“I am sorry. You lost me,” Jon said.

“Don’t worry, I will catch you up to speed,” the Doctor said, patting his back and running

to the console. He began pulling levers, and pushing buttons, and twirling around the console in

a mad rush. “You, Sir, have captured my curiosity.” He paused on the closer side of the console.

“Do you ever feel like you’re sitting in a chair, leaning back, balancing the chair on two legs, and you’re about to fall, but you catch yourself just before.”

“Steven Wright joke?” Jon asked.

“Yeah, I gave it to him,” the Doctor said. “It wasn’t meant to be a joke. I feel like that all

the time, but I always land on my feet… Mostly, I land on my feet. And, you, Sir, appear to have

taken a step into my world. Which is curious, because it’s way too soon in human evolution for

that to happen. There’s was debate amongst my people that it would ever happen. Which is odd,

when you think about it. We have time machines. There should be no debates. Oh, but then,

things change. Most things change. Change occurs all the time. Except, for the few hard events.

Those things change, but they’re really resistant to change, but there are some hard limits, as if someone else collapsed the wave front. Which begs the existential question, who is observing

whom?” He reversed his way around the console undoing everything he had done. “Oh, too

much, sorry, I ramble when I am excited. Do you ever ramble?”

“All the time,” Loxy assured him.

“Here we are. Don’t move. Wait right here. I need to collect some friends. Can’t have a

proper adventure without friends, now can we?” He headed to the door, Jon turning to watch him

leave, but not leaving his present spot. The Doctor came to a halt, taking hold the arm rail as if he needed it to stop his momentum. He turned to Jon with his afterthought. “Well, I mean, you

could have an adventure without friends, but then it just becomes a tall tale that people question the veracity and validity to the point you even begin to wonder, and when you wonder, that’s

when things really start to change, and so to properly collapse the wave front and make reality

solid, you need people! That’s my story. Don’t move. And don’t touch anything. I’ll be right

back.” He thought about it further. “I should be right back. There is food and drink in that

12

cabinet there. And there is a lavatory and toilet just around that bin. But don’t move. I should be back before any of that.”

He was gone in a mad flash.

“Well, he’s a bit queer, isn’t he,” Loxy said.

“I am still sorting,” Jon said.

“Fair enough,” Loxy said. “We’re definitely picking up momentum, though, what do you

think?”

“It’s really beginning to be difficult to discern the difference between waking reality and

our daydreams. Before meeting you, had anyone asked if daydreams could be as real as say, a

regular lucid dream during REM sleep, I would have said they are smoking something.”

The door to the TARDIS burst open with energy. A female was leading the charge and

she seemed mad, as evidence by her walk and the fact she was lamenting that she had thought

the Doctor was done with them.

“Amy! I am surprised,” the Doctor said. “Why would you even think that?”

Another man entered, closing the TARDIS door behind him. He was wearing jeans and

pull over shirt with an alien logo on it. He, also, appeared to be upset. The woman, wearing a

white, flowery summer dress, and a wool sweater, came to a stop on seeing Jon. Jon tried a

smile. She swept hair out of her face and turned back to the Doctor so quickly that all of her hair switched to the other side, requiring her to brush it out of her face again.

“You replaced me with an old guy?” Amy asked.

“Amy?! How could you even think such a thing? I don’t trade out people. I simply make

new friends,” the Doctor said.

“You prefer an old guy friend to me?” Amy asked.

“Don’t stare at her,” Loxy whispered in Jon’s ear.

Self-conscious, Jon looked away.

“Were you staring at my wife, Sir?” Rory demanded, approaching Jon.

“Ease off, Rory,” Amy said, approaching just as close, staring at Jon as if she wanted to

poke his face and test whether he was real. “What’s his name?”

“I don’t know,” the Doctor said. “I didn’t get that far. Interestingly, he has also not

interjected it into the conversation. I find that refreshing. Someone who isn’t so ego driven they 13

feel compelled that I know their name, or demand I explain what’s going on. He’s just taking it all in stride. Absolutely beautiful.”

“You’re actually clueless, aren’t you?” Amy asked him.

“You are stunning,” Jon said.

“OMG, Jon, everywhere we go,” Loxy said.

Amy bit her lip and looked to the Doctor. Rory tapped his chest. “I am warning you, Sir. I

was a centurion.”

“You used to be a hundred years old?” Jon asked.

“What?” Rory asked.

“A centurion, Jon, not a centenarian, though, technically, Rory actually qualifies for

both,” the Doctor said, gesturing freely.

“He’s not very clever, is he?” Rory said.

“He sounds American,” Amy said.

“Oh! Amy, Rory. Please,” the Doctor said. “You can’t connect the two.”

“I wasn’t suggesting he is stupid because he’s an American,” Amy said.

“Oh, well, then, yeah, I picked him up in America,” the Doctor said.

“Seriously, Sir, no offense. I have lots of American friends,” Amy said.

“Name one,” Rory said.

“Why would you put me on the spot like that?” Amy said.

“Don’t say it,” Loxy told Jon.

Jon turned to Loxy. “Don’t say what?”

Amy and Rory both took a step back.

“What was that?” Amy asked.

“Picked him up, where, precisely?” Rory said. “A line at a Mental Health Clinic?”

“No, Rory, please. That would be very cruel taking someone who is struggling with

social norms and mental illness out into space. I picked him up outside of a bar,” the Doctor said.

“Seriously,” Amy said. “You’re not helping my esteem.”

“He’s interesting?!” the Doctor said.

“He’s dull!” Rory said.

“He’s old,” Amy said.

14

“I am not that old,” Jon said. “Wait a minute. I am at least as old he is and you clearly

fancy him!”

“He’s the Doctor,” Amy said, as if that explained it all.

“How come every time you get mad you switch to RP,” Loxy asked, very American

sounding.

“What’s RP?” Jon asked.

Amy pointed at him when his eyes shifted back to the person who wasn’t there. “He’s

hallucinating and has multiple personalities,” Amy said.

“They call it DID now,” Rory said.

“I don’t think he’s a hallucinating,” the Doctor said.

“He clearly responding to internal stimuli,” Rory said.

“I think he is channeling the soufflé girl,” the Doctor said.

“The girl in the Dahlek?” Rory asked.

“He’s channeling a Dahlek and you brought him into the TARDIS?” Amy said, taking

another step back. She took Rory’s arm to pull him back.

“He’s not a Dahlek,” the Doctor said.

“So, why did you bring us in on this?” Rory asked. “Is someone about to die?”

“No, no, this is not an emergency. This is just, interesting. He’s an anomaly,” the Doctor

said.

“I am not an anomaly,” Jon said.

“Where did you fetch him from?” Amy asked.

“Texas,” the Doctor said.

“Texas is a big place, could you narrow it a bit?” Amy asked.

“Austin. A bar named Barbarella,” the Doctor said. “A really nice little bar. Subdued

lighting. Really diverse group of patrons.”

“You’re picking up companions at bars now?” Amy said.

“It’s not like that,” the Doctor said.

“Oh, what’s it like picking up old men from bars?” Amy asked.

“You don’t remember?” Rory asked.

“I am so going to hurt you,” Amy said. She caught Jon trying to hide his reaction. “Don’t

you smirk, Sir. I was putting myself through college.”

15

“I was willing to help you,” Rory said.

“I wanted to do it on my own,” Amy said.

“Are you two fighting again?” the Doctor asked.

“You didn’t notice? I swear, every time we get into it you show up and block us from

getting anything resolved,” Rory said.

“Oh, don’t blame him for our problems,” Amy said. “OMG, I can’t take this. What is

your name, Sir?”

“Jon Harister,” Jon said.

“What do you do for a living?”

Jon hesitated, looking to Loxy for help.

“Don’t be ashamed. They’re the accepting sort. Just tell them,” Loxy said.

“What is that?!” Amy said.

“What was what?” Jon asked.

“Stop acting crazy stupid. You looked over there like you were looking to someone for an

answer,” Amy said. “Are you making shit up?”

“What?” Jon asked.

Amy snapped her fingers at Jon. “Looking up and to the left means you’re accessing the

right side of your brain, so you’re trying to come up with a lie.”

“Where did you get that?” Rory asked.

“From that detective show we were watching,” Amy said.

“Oh, I must have fallen asleep there,” Rory said.

“Just before,” Amy said. “Quick, Jon Harister, what do you do for a living?”

“I am a hypnotist,” Jon said.

“Oh, well, that’s kind of cool. Like a stage hypnotist?” Rory said.

“No, more like a male escort,” Jon offered.

“What?” Amy asked. Rory’s ‘what’ sounded more like, “Really?!” They exchanged

looks.

“Is that kind of like a kiss-a-gram?” the Doctor asked. “Because Amy used to do that,

too.”

“I never hypnotized people against their will,” Amy said.

“No, you just hit people with a bat and handcuff them to the heater,” the Doctor said.

16

“That’s usually how my personal dates go,” Jon said.

“It wasn’t a date,” Amy corrected him.

“And I don’t hypnotize people against their wills,” Jon said.

“Why are you here?” Amy asked.

Jon shrugged.

“Doctor, why is he here,” Amy asked.

“I told you, I think he’s channeling soufflé girl,” the Doctor said.

“Is he even human?” Rory asked.

“That’s the strange thing,” the Doctor said. “He’s absolutely human. Mundane, ordinary,

nothing particularly special about him in any remarkable way. I suppose one could argue his

extreme normality in itself is abnormal.”

“Oh! Don’t listen to him, Jon,” Loxy said. “I think you’re special.”

“Except,” Amy said.

“Two things. First, I found him caught up in a small temporal loop, which I interrupted by

bringing him here,” the Doctor said.

“Does that happen a lot?” Rory asked.

“Temporal loops? Oh, much more often than people care to acknowledge,” the Doctor

said. “Of course, most people pause and ride it out, experiencing nothing more than a little

freaky déjà vu, and then they push on about their routine, and never think of it again. But he was riding it. That in and of itself is worth closer scrutiny.”

“And the other thing?” Amy said.

“He’s channeling the soufflé girl!” the Doctor said.

“Channeling how?” Rory asked. “Like a psychic?”

“Precisely,” the Doctor said. “He is in telepathic contact with soufflé girl.”

“How is that even possible?” Amy asked. “She was blown up with the planet.”

“Yeah, yeah, but, that planet is a long ways a way, and so, clearly, he is getting old

transmissions,” Rory said.

“Are you trying to be clever?” Amy asked.

“I was aiming for funny,” Rory said.

“Well, stop it,” Amy said. She looked to Jon. “Are you channeling soufflé girl? What was

her name?” She snapped her fingers trying to get someone to give it to her.

17

“Clara,” the Doctor said.

“Yeah, are you channeling Clara?” Amy asked.

“I am really kind of lost here,” Jon said.

Amy put her hands on her hips, akimbo, and spoke very slowly: “Are you, channeling,

any alien entities?”

“There are aliens? Like, for real aliens?” Jon asked.

Amy looked to the Doctor. “Please tell me, you didn’t replace me with him.”

“I did not replace you,” the Doctor said.

“Jon,” Rory said. “Why do you think you’re here?”

“I am still trying to sort that,” Jon said. “But I find, if we just go along with the dream

characters, it eventually all makes sense.”

“You think you’re dreaming?” Amy said.

“Yes, and I think I can prove it,” Jon said.

“We’re listening,” Amy said.

Since Rory was closer, Jon held his hand out to him. “Would you give me a twenty dollar

bill please,” Jon said.

“I am British,” Rory said.

“Oh, okay, well then, the equivalent in pounds,” Jon said.

“I didn’t bring my wallet,” Rory said.

“And that’s my proof,” Jon said.

“Asking for money and not getting it is proof that you’re dreaming?” Rory asked.

“Yes. There’s always an excuse for me not receiving money. Therefore, I am dreaming,”

Jon said.

Amy was shaking her head in dismay. “How is that even logical?! If you were dreaming,

and you asked for money, it should rain money.”

“I wish! But never in my dreams,” Jon said. “It’s actually kind of funny. You ask for

money and people have all kinds of weird excuses. Rory has none. Who walks around with no

cash?”

“Lots of people,” the Doctor said.

“Okay, maybe I am not dreaming, but I bet I can give you evidence you’re dreaming,”

Jon said.

18

“Even if that made sense, what does that have to do with you?” Amy asked.

“Well, if you’re dreaming, then clearly I am not here, because I am a dream character,”

Jon said.

“I am not dreaming…” Amy said.

“I want to hear this,” Rory said.

“Are you angry?” Jon asked Amy.

“No, I am annoyed,” Amy said.

“Annoyed sounds angry,” Jon said.

Rory rubbed the back of his head not adding anything to the observation.

“I am going to be angry if you say my being annoyed is evidence I am dreaming,” Amy

said.

“Oh, no, that’s not the evidence, but most people are not annoyed by a real thing but a

perceived thing, which means, you’re annoyed either due to direct dream content inconsistencies,

or because of an expectation that should be a certain, which subconsciously means you know

you’re dreaming and you don’t like the divergence,” Jon said, and when their expression

suggested he was dazzling them into incoherence, he changed tracks. “Forget that. Let me walk

you through this. Have you ever been in a crisis?”

“So many I have lost count,” Amy said. “Can you be more precise?”

“Okay, have you ever had a crisis and the Doctor was present?” Jon asked.

“That’s really not narrowing it down, is it?” Rory said.

“No,” Amy agreed.

“That’s interesting, and could be evidence you’re dreaming,” Jon said.

“Because every time I travel with the Doctor there’s a crisis is evidence I am dreaming?”

Amy asked.

“The alternative is the Doctor comes with a lot of drama, which means, what, you like

drama, and then I have to sort out why you’re angry, because either you’re living the life you

want or you would be making efforts to avoid the Doctor, but yes, the fact that the Doctor keeps

coming at you and you keep having crises is meaningful. And I am not saying the Doctor is

causing crises. That would be like that thing where the bigger the fire, the more firemen show,

suggests there’s a correlation between damage and the number of fireman, whereas damage is

more likely related to the size and intensity of the fire. The Doctor’s presence could be explained 19

because you were already in crisis when you met, oh, that could be evidence for dreaming,” Jon said.

“No it’s not. Everyone has crises,” Amy said.

“But not everyone gets a Doctor,” Jon said. “Oh. Here it is. Think back to any one crisis.

Were you ever in a tight spot with the Doctor and it looked like all hope was lost?”

“All the time,” Amy said.

“And yet, something always inexplicable happens, like the Doctor has an epiphany or

suddenly, out of nowhere, the very thing you need to resolve the situation, like a tool, or a key to the door, or the entry of another agent, is suddenly available. If anything magically diverted,

delayed, or ended the crisis, you’re most likely dreaming.”

“How do you figure that?” Amy said.

“Either you’re an unsuspecting character living in a reality TV show filled with tons of

badly placed plot contrivances to move your story along, or you’re dreaming,” Jon said. “True

deadly monster or robots don’t walk around mechanically saying ‘kill, kill, kill, exterminate,

kill,’ they just kill you. Real bad guys don’t pull up and suddenly have a spot of tea with you or design elaborate pitfalls and stick around to watch you suffer. They shoot you, they move on.”

“I don’t have a way to refute that,” Amy said.

“I am not asking you to,” Jon said. “This is why I never questions reality. There’s always

either an explanation that seems to satisfy at the moment, or something happens to distract you

from the question. So, right now, maybe I am inside some really cool spaceship time machine

that’s bigger on the inside, or I am on a movie set and you are all having a bit of fun at my

expense, or I am dreaming. I could be hypntozied, but that’s just dreaming, isn’t it!”

“You’re not dreaming,” the Doctor said.

“That’s exactly what a hallucination would say. That’s also, interestingly enough, what

the paid actor would say to keep me going along with the script,” Jon said.

“What would convince you?” the Doctor asked.

“Give me twenty bucks,” Jon said.

“I honestly don’t have any cash,” the Doctor said.

“Seriously? I am not asking for a million dollars. I am cheap and easy,” the Jon said.

“Just give me twenty bucks.” Loxy said she would vouch for that.

20

“I don’t have twenty bucks,” the Doctor said. “But I do have a really cool spaceship time

machine that’s bigger on the inside.”

“I would find twenty bucks more convincing,” Jon said. “I’ll give it right back.”

“We don’t need money when traveling with the Doctor,” Rory said. “And, I get tired

misplacing my wallet and having to get a new license so I left it on the dresser.”

“Seriously?” the Doctor asked. “You never told me you lost your wallet. That could be a

serious temporal hazard.”

“Three more excuses,” Jon said.

“OMG,” Amy said, and nearly walked away.

“What would you do with the money?” Rory asked.

“Well, I’d keep it. If I am dreaming, and it’s always a dream, I will wake up and not have

the money, and I will have my proof, and you won’t have lost anything,” Jon said.

“But if you aren’t dreaming, you will have my money,” Rory said.

“Exactly, which is why no one ever wants to wager with me that I am not dreaming,

because, they’d be out twenty bucks,” Jon said.

“You don’t need money in a dream,” Amy said.

“Which is probably why I never have any,” Jon said. “And, the whole point of the

conversation is really to demonstrate, there is no way to know I am not dreaming, but one might

reasonably conclude that when discussions of aliens, or really cool spaceship time machines,

start creeping into the conversation, one is most likely dreaming. Per Mathew O’Dowd, it’s

never aliens, until it’s aliens.”

“Who?” Amy asked.

“A physics guy on youtube,” the Doctor and Rory said.

“Oh, very nice,” the Doctor said.

“I am trying to keep up with you,” Rory sad.

“Good for you. I can’t think of a single video of his that might be helpful in any of our

situation, but knowledge is always good. Keep watching. Alright, but back to the mystery at

hand, dream or no, if you’re not talking to Clara, who are you talking to?” the Doctor asked.

“Oh, just go ahead and introduce me,” Loxy said.

“They’ll think I am crazy,” Jon said, answering Loxy direct.

“Too late,” Amy said.

21

Rory took a step back to rejoin his wife. “Schizophrenia could explain a lot.”

“Except you backing away; it’s not catchy,” Jon said.

Amy stepped closer to where she suspected Loxy was, based on Jon’s eye movement. Her

hands didn’t find anyone.

“Oh, I already tried that,” the Doctor said. “Even tried scanning for her. No luck. That

said, the TARDIS seems to recognize her presence.”

“The TARDIS recognizes there is someone else here?” Amy asked.

“Cause, that’s not creepy,” Rory said.

“Who is the TARDIS?” Jon asked.

The Doctor motioned ambiguously to the room.

“Oh,” Jon said. “You have a Tulpa, too?”

“A what?” Rory asked.

“A Tulpa,” Jon said.

“What’s a Tulpa?” Amy asked.

“You really don’t know?” Jon asked. “You travel in a really cool spaceship time machine,

and you don’t know about tulpas?”

“Doctor?” Amy asked.

“Well, it’s kind of complex,” the Doctor said. “And, dependent upon cultural definitions.

You can liken it to multiple personality disorder.”

“They call it DID now,” Rory said.

“So you said,” the Doctor said. “So, how do they explain multiples when it’s not trauma

related?”

“This is not DID,” Jon said. “Basically, a Tulpa is a thought form. A complex thought

form. In essence, I imagined a personality with such persistency and enthusiasm, through a

process of repetition that eventually the subconscious mind took over the character I created and animated the personality. The personality no longer responds from pre-programed scripts but

instead has an internal life of its own. A tulpa is a completely autonomous personality that co-

exist in parallel to the host personality. With continued interaction, the personality becomes

sentient. I share my brain with a companion; she is able to impose herself on all of my senses so I experience her in my everyday world as if she were really here. She has access to my

22

unconscious mind. We practice lucid dreaming and active imagination techniques, invented by Carl Jung, and in doing so experience all the Universe has to offer from an internal perspective.”

Amy translated: “You created an invisible friend.”

“In essence,” Jon said. Loxy was saying ‘a really cool invisible friend.’ He agreed with

her.

“Oh,” Rory said. “That’s kind of cool.”

“Seriously?” Amy asked. “It’s really sad. He couldn’t make any real friends, so he had to

make an invisible friend! Oh, what irony. It’s exactly what you do for your clients? You

hypnotize them into having fantasies.”

“You can make fun me all you want, but not my clientele; they’re off limits,” Jon said.

“You help people live a lie,” Amy said.

“So, you’re also against movies, TV, and books?” Jon asked. “Do you know how many

lonely people there are in our world? Seriously, people actually thought Gilligan’s Island was a

real thing! They wrote letters to the Navy asking them to help find the castaways. We’re more

connected with technology than ever, but depression and loneliness are epidemic! I don’t give

people a permanent vacation into fantasy. Some just want travel to some exotic, foreign land.

Some of my clients just want a moment without pain. Some want to dance with the stars, and

imagine being free from their wheelchairs. Some want to meet aliens. Some want to go on a nice

fancy dinner with a movie star. I make that happen. They know in advance it’s not real. During

the experience, it’s very real for them, and they helped sculpt it before we even start into the

trance. Afterwards, they have very pleasant memories of the experience, but again, they know it

was fantasy. Hypnosis is deeper and richer than anything television can offer, because it engages all of the senses. Yeah, some of them swear by it, thinking they were actually there. But, that’s not even the weird part. Many of my clients through this process actually experience sudden,

inexplicable remission of illnesses, like no more migraines or allergies. The physically

challenged experience improved mental health. After two or three sessions, most of my clients

feel so much better about themselves that they become more social, they start changing their

lives, and they stop calling me for fantasies. Who would have thought fantasy hypnosis would

help people actually get better.

“Yes, Amy, I was lonely. I have been lonely all my life. Oddly, I have been lonely even

when I was with other people. But, instead of whining about my situation, because people just

23

love hanging out with crybabies, right, I became self-reliant. Fantasies were working for my clients. I decided I would practice my own medicine. I created a Tulpa. Her name is Loxy

Isadora Bliss. And she has changed my life. I am happier. I am healthier. I am actually putting

myself out there in the real world, flaws and all, and taking risks. Which, oddly enough, has

brought us to the three of you. This feels significant somehow, but I am starting to get annoyed.

And this is where I practice one of my three golden rules: 1, always assume you’re dreaming. 2,

treat all dream characters as yourself, because how you treat yourself is ultimately how you will treat others. And 3, boil all problems down to one of three solutions sets, which is fight, flight, or love. I have done all the fighting I am going to do. It just leads to more fighting. I am tired of running, cause no matter how far or how fast you run, at the end of it all, you’re left facing

yourself; you’re never really running from the thing you were trying to avoid, but rather from

something inside you. There’s a joke there. Where ever you go, there you are. The only real

solution, to any problem, is love. I embrace everything, imperfectly sometimes, but I do the best that I can with what I have in each moment.”

Silence followed. The Doctor was musing it over, and seemed impressed. The TARDIS

hummed happily in the background, not a single protest. Amy blinked.

“That sounds rather profound,” Rory said.

“Actually,” Amy said. “Doctor, have you been coaching him?”

“Jon, how would you like to meet your Tulpa in the flesh?” the Doctor asked.

“That’s possible?” Jon and Loxy both said at the same time, and then smiled at each other.

“Oh, there are lots of ways of manifesting Tulpas,” the Doctor said. “Some are more

lasting than others.”

“It won’t hurt her, will it?” Jon asked.

“Oh, no, no,” the Doctor said. “Well, my preferred way won’t hurt her. I don’t think.”

“If it was anything like the shoulder mender, I am game,” Loxy said.

“What did she say?” the Doctor asked.

“Okay,” Jon said.

“Okay it is!” the Doctor said, rushing to the control console. “To Ever Land.”

“Where Peter Pan lives?” Jon asked.

“That’s Never Land,” Amy said.

“Just making sure. I don’t want to go there,” Jon said. “Again.”

24

Chapter 3

The Forest of Ever was directly outside the door. The Doctor lead the way, followed by Amy,

then by Rory. Jon remained in the Tardis looking out. The grass did look nice, almost like a bed

of clovers and moss. The sky was practically impossible to see through the forest, but slivers of intense blue leaked through as the rustling of leaves applauded the arrival of the Doctor.

“Come on, it’s perfectly safe,” the Doctor said.

“Why aren’t there leaves on the ground?” Jon asked.

“That is a brilliant observation,” the Doctor said. “Leave eaters!” The Doctor turned in

place and then back to Jon. “I don’t see any at the moment. They kind of migrate, following the

fall of leaves.”

“Maybe we should get back in the TARDIS,” Rory said.

Amy frowned, wondering the same thing, but she deudced: “They’re leave easters? Not

people eaters?”

“It is perfectly safe,” the Doctor assured them. “Nothing ever bad happens at Ever. Jon,

come out.”

“I preferred to stay in the TARDIS,” Jon said.

“I would like you to come out and meet some friends of mine,” the Doctor said.

“People meaning trees?” Rory asked.

“Tress can be nice people,” the Doctor said. “Jon, come out of the TARDIS.”

“No. I know how this works. I come out, you go back in, and leave me stranded in a

forest thickly,” Jon said.

“The Doctor doesn’t leave people,” Amy said.

“He has a valid concern,” Rory said. “Things do tend to happen.”

Humanoids arrived in the forest clearing. Rory jumped, startled, and said, ‘Like that.”

They looked human in every way, except perhaps taller. And greener; their skin was various

shades of green. They weren’t tall and gangly, but fully proportioned humans who also happened

to be taller than ‘human’, the shortest one being just over 2 meters. One of them reminded Jon of Ekaterina Lisina, the tallest model in the world, on Earth; on Ever, she would be considered

average. They were wearing robes with hoods, less like proper druids and more like Little Red

Riding hood, if Little Red Riding hood was also combined with Star Trek and Cosplay Deviant

25

Druids. There were six males, seven females, and one of the females made it clear that she was in charge, not in a regal way, but perhaps due to a lottery, or experience. They were barefoot.

The grass looked really soft, cool, and pleasant to walk on.

“Hello, Doctor,” the most prominent one said.

“Ah, Angela! So nice to see you again,” the Doctor said. “I didn’t think you would

actually be here.”

“We had an agreement,” Angela said. “Your part was never to return to Ever.”

“I know, I know, but I need your help,” the Doctor said. “And this was the fastest way to

get in touch with you.”

“The sound of the TARDIS is the harbinger of death,” Angela said. “Trees cannot run

from the terrors that follow you.”

“No terrors today,” the Doctor assured them. “In fact, this is turning out to be one of the

most peaceful adventures I have had in good run. It could have very easily started with death, but it actually started with the saving of lives.”

“You failed to mention that,” Rory said.

“Did I?” the Doctor said.

“We have only just recently got the mimicry birds to stop singing the TARDIS song,”

Angela said.

“Oh, well, that’s a really long time for them to carry a sound isn’t it,” the Doctor said.

“But, if I recall correctly, it was their mimicry that confused the enemy at the time. It helped to save your planet.”

“We don’t hate you, Doctor,” Angela said. “We’re just afraid of you.”

“I know,” the Doctor said. “But, Angela, we had some good times together, didn’t we?”

Angela looked to the two humans outside the TARDIS. “You two are the companions?”

“She is,” Rory said. “I am just barely tolerated.”

“Rory, stop pouting,” Amy said. “The Doctor prefers females. Why is that so hard for

you to get?”

“Human. Female. Earth. How is your planet fairing under the Doctor’s care?” Angela

asked.

“Oh, well, it’s touch and go, really,” Amy said.

“Amy,” the Doctor said, sounding shocked.

26

“Just being honest,” Amy said.

Angela smiled as if she had proven her point, crossed her arms. “How can we serve you,

Doctor?”

“Jon, come out and meet my friends,” the Doctor said. “Now.”

Jon removed his shoes and socks, and emerged from the TARDIS, timidly. On seeing

him, the Avatars of the Trees of Ever went to their knees, their heads bowed.

“That was unexpected,” Amy whispered to the Doctor.

“Yeah,” the Doctor agreed. “Angela?”

“May we stand, my Lord?” Angela asked.

Jon gave a curious eyebrow to the Doctor. Amy hit Jon’s shoulder.

“Ow! Why did you hit me?” Jon asked.

“She does that,” Rory said.

Amy hit Rory.

“Stop hitting people,” the Doctor said. He looked to Jon and nodded towards the Avatars

of the Trees.

Jon seemed confused.

“OMG, you can’t be that dense,” Amy said.

“Don’t yell at him,” Rory said.

“Don’t befriend him,” Amy said.

“Why are you two so cross?” the Doctor asked.

“We were in the middle of something…” Rory began.

“He doesn’t need to be in our business,” Amy said.

“It never stopped you before,” Rory said.

“We’re not here for us. Jon, say something. They’re clearly revering you,” Amy said.

“They never bowed to me, that’s for sure,” the Doctor said.

“Why would they bow to me, he’s the Time Lord,” Jon said.

“Not that kind of Lord,” the Doctor said. Amy hands went to her hip, wonder woman

akimbo power stance. “Well, it’s not really.”

“Jon, tell them to stand up,” Loxy said.

“Please, stand up,” Jon said.

27

The Avatars of Ever all stood as one. Angela came closer to Jon. It was difficult to

discern if she was looking at him as a child or a lover.

“Has the Doctor harmed you?” Angela asked.

“Have I harmed him?” the Doctor asked, flabbergasted.

“Directly or indirectly,” Angela said.

“No, he’s been nice enough. He and his friends are a little confusing and I am struggling

to keep up, but he was nice enough to mend a wound,” Jon said.

“You were wounded?” Amy asked.

“You didn’t mention that, either,” Rory said.

“It was a flesh wound,” the Doctor said.

Amy touched the hole on the back of Jon’s shirt. Rory mirrored her, touching the hole on

the front of the shirt.

“Doctor?” Rory said.

“Where was this bar again exactly?” Amy asked.

“Texas,” the Doctor said.

“Old West?” Amy asked.

“No, same day and year as you,” the Doctor said.

“Oh, because that explains everything,” Amy said. “Why was someone shooting at

him?!”

“He disarmed a bomb,” the Doctor said.

“Um, we’re not moving closer to clarity here,” Amy said.

“I am still trying to piece it all together myself,” the Doctor said.

“Well, if you ask me, I think I could help,” Loxy said.

Angela turned her eyes towards Loxy. “Go on, then.”

Loxy drew suddenly very close to Jon, and whispered in his ear, “I think she can see me.”

“I knew it!” the Doctor said. “She’s not just a regular old hallucination.” Amy and Rory

both looked at him. “Honest, I knew it.”

“Who are you calling old?” Loxy said.

“She is not a hallucination,” Angela agreed. “She is an Avatar.”

“Yeah, not much help,” Amy said.

28

“I told you, different cultures have different nomenclatures. Tulpas. Avatars. They’re all

describing the same thing,” the Doctor said. “An argument can be made that even our everyday

personalities are just Tulpas. Tell them, Angela.”

“We are the Avatars of the Trees of Ever. Jon Harister is one of the Avatars of Gaia, and

in his present incarnation, he is the Dreamer of Dreams. Loxy is the Avatar of the One. Jon

called out, Loxy answered. They will remain entangled till the end of time, or longer if they

choose.”

“Who is the One?” Rory asked.

“Oh, you’ll never get a clear answer on that one,” the Doctor said. “Believe me, I have

tried.”

“Seems pretty straight forwards to me,” Amy said.

“It does?” Rory asked.

“The One is the Original Dreamer. We are all Avatar of the One. Human beings are

indirect avatars, just as we are indirect avatars. Trees are direct Avatars of the One. All humans personalities are Avatars for greater beings,” Angela said.

“Think Jung and the Collective Unconscious,” the Doctor said. “The Trees of Ever

believe the subconscious mind is the true entity, and the personality is merely a front, an

interactional point of reference. Each tree has a subconscious and super conscious, and the

Avatars are the personalities they use for interacting with their environments.”

“Like I said, tree spirits, pretty straight forwards,” Amy said.

“Except for the whole bit about humans being projections of some greater being,” Rory

said.

“Well, no that’s pretty easy concept, Rory. Imagine you weren’t born in the UK, but in

some other county, some other time. You wouldn’t speak English. Most likely you’d speak

Mandarin, or Cantonese, or Hindi. You’d have a different religion, a different culture, different memories, a different name. You would not be the Rory we all love and adore.”

“Who would I be?” Rory said.

“Oh, I don’t know, maybe a Centurion?” the Doctor asked.

“You seem to be taking this all pretty well,” Amy said to Jon.

“Well, we’re talking about dreams and this does all seem to be rather dream like,” Jon

said. “Actually, it affirms my philosophy of dreaming. All dream characters are avatars of me,

29

me playing me. I suspect, as Robert Wagoner did in his Lucid Dreaming book, characters aren’t just static, two dimensional beings. They’re entities in their own right. Jung supports this

concept. So did Joseph Campbell…”

“The more in touch you become with your true nature, the more dream like reality

seems,” Angela said.

“Yeah, well, it doesn’t always feel dream like,” Jon said.

“You will understand your true nature and the importance of your role when it is time.

Full disclosure prior to your readiness could result in insanity,” Angela said. “How may we serve you, Doctor?”

“Could you give Loxy a body?” the Doctor asked.

Angela didn’t seem surprised. She stepped up closer to Jon, peered down into his eyes,

intently, as if having a private conversation with someone. She closed her eyes and nodded. She

retreated, staring at the ground for a moment, then had a silent conversation with the others. She returned.

“You will not find the answers you are looking for, Doctor,” Angela said. “And the

deeper you pry, the more elusive the answers will be, confounded by additional layers of

complexity the deeper you go.”

“You’re telling me not to do this? Not to investigate a mystery?” the Doctor asked.

“We would never tell an adult what to do,” Angela said. “We only inform and trust you

will make good decisions.”

“I would like Loxy to have a corporal existence,” the Doctor said.

“You assume she doesn’t,” Angela said. “Your kind too easily dismiss the realities of the

inner world. We have sought and received Consensus. If Jon and Loxy are in agreement, we can

provide her an Avatar for this reality frame.”

“Seriously?” Jon, Loxy, Amy, and Rory echoed together, all with different hopes and

fear.

“Doctor,” Amy said. “I don’t know much about tulpas, but I have seen a horror movie or

two, and generally bringing things from the dream world doesn’t work out so well.”

“She will be as real as you believe you are,” Angela said.

“How does that ease my mind?” Amy asked.

“What does that even mean?” Rory asked.

30

“Most beings live their lives one life at a time, experiencing amnesia of past and future

lives,” Angela said. “This is necessary to maintain the Continuity of the One.”

“We’re talking reincarnation here?” Amy said.

“You are a companion of the Doctor, how can you not believe? The Time Lords are one

of the few species that can live all of their incarnations in one life thread. Regeneration,

reincarnation, it is all the same. You are energy. Energy can neither be created nor destroyed. It simply is. Everything else is illusion.”

“We came here to make the invisible visible,” the Doctor said.

“Jon, do you believe in things unseen?” Angela asked.

“Oh, sure,” Jon said. “I play Pokemon Go all the time.”

Angela looked to the Doctor and the companions trying to glean understanding through

their expressions. She turned back to Jon. “Does Loxy want this?”

“Oh, yes, please, being a real live girl sounds immensely fun,” Loxy said. “Think of the

adventures we can have together.”

“Jon, do you want this?” Angela asked. “It will change everything.”

“I would like this for her,” Jon said.

“Why?” Amy asked. “Because the Doctor is pressuring you for his own entertainment?”

“Wow,” Rory said. “You’re not supporting the Doctor. That’s new.”

“Doctor, you’re doing this because you’re curious,” Amy said. “Not because of some

greater good for Jon or for Loxy. You’re just curious. Maybe Jon isn’t insane. Maybe he was

insane, but he created Loxy. Now you’re going to rip out his emotional support? Where is that

going to leave him?”

“But, if we do this, Loxy will be independent of me. Free to come and go as she wishes?"

Jon said.

“She will be free. You will remain entangled,” Angela said.

“But if we do this, and I were to die, she would be free, she wouldn’t die with me,” Jon

said.

“There is no death, only change,” Angela said.

“Okay, so if I die, she won’t die with me,” Jon said.

31

“She will not die with you, as you understand death. Change is inevitable. None of us live

in a vacuum. We co-evolve. There will be consequences for this decision. There is no wrong

choice here,” Angela said.

Jon turned to Loxy. “I am conflicted.”

“You’re afraid I will leave you if I am free,” Loxy said.

“Oh, screw that, no,” Jon said. “Okay, maybe a little, but I am used to people leaving.

You do what you need to do on that score, I’ll be alright. No! I am not worried about that. If

that’s what you choose, I will support you, I will help you even, because my only goal in life is to see you happy.”

“So, what worries you?” Angela and Loxy both said.

“I can’t help you choose,” Jon said to Loxy. “I am bias. A part of me wants you to stay

inside me, because, well, I feel safe knowing you’re always a thought away. At the same time, I

want you to be free so you can experience all that life has to offer and you’re not chained. But

the thing is, I am afraid that either choice I make is being made out of fear, not love. Ultimately, you have to decide this on your own, because this is about you and your life. This is huge. I just want what best for you.”

Loxy hugged Jon. His eyes closed as he surrendered to it. “I love you. You made me,

against all odds and self-doubt, risking sanity, further ridicule. Making me was a bigger

commitment than marriage, because you can’t divorce what’s in your head. You risked it all and

gave me the greatest gift any human could have. You gave me total access to every thought,

every impulse, conscious and unconscious, and you gave me your heart, flaws and all. Now, I

want to give you something.”

They came out of the hug. “You already given me everything.”

“No, I haven’t, but if I do this, I can. I can do it daily, for the rest of your life,” Loxy said.

“What’s that?” Jon asked.

“I can walk beside you in real life, demonstrating daily that an independent agent can

love you and be with you, even knowing all of your flaws,” Loxy said. “Let me give this to you.”

Jon wiped tears from his face. Loxy took his hand.

“We want to do this,” Loxy said.

Angela stepped forwards and put her hands on Jon’s arms. She touched her forehead to

his, closed her eyes, and remained silent for a long moment. She then removed a small pine cone

32

from her pocket. It was very similar to the pine cone from a Sequoia Tree. She closed it in his hands, and then closed her hands over it, and raised their hands so that it that resembled

‘Namaste’ only two people joined as one. She kissed him. Their hands flattened between them.

Jon would have retreated but two of the other females had stepped up and placed their hands on

his shoulders and Angela’s to keep them from falling away from each other. The servants

retreated and Angela stepped away. When she unfolded Jon’s hands, the tiny pine cone seemed

fused with light. She removed it gingerly. Jon seemed dazed.

“How come my encounters never end up like that,” Rory said.

Amy rolled her eyes. “Excuse me?”

“I’m just saying, I usually end up getting stabbed,” Rory said.

“If you want the appearance of instantaneous results, we need to travel to the past twenty

years ago,” Angela said.

“Come on, then,” the Doctor said.

“Jon must remain here,” Angela said.

“I knew you were going to leave me,” Jon said. “Didn’t I say he was going to do that?”

“You did,” Rory said.

“I am right here, still,” Loxy said, taking his hand. “We’ll be okay.”

“We’ll be right back,” the Doctor said.

“Oh, I have heard that before,” Amy said.

“There were circumstances…” the Doctor said.

“There are always circumstances,” Amy said.

“Oh, we’re just all one big happy family,” Loxy said.

Angela turned to her. “This is happy?”

“Family,” Loxy said.

“So, Rory, you stay here with Jon so he doesn’t feel abandoned. Angela and Amy, you’re

with me,” the Doctor said.

“Now, hold on a minute,” Rory said.

“What, I can’t leave you alone for like five whole minutes?” Amy asked.

“All I am saying is why don’t I get to go with the Doctor for once,” Rory said.

“Oh, alright, Rory, you with me. Amy, you stay with Jon,” the Doctor said.

“No, no, on second thought, you go with the Doctor,” Rory said.

33

“You don’t trust me with Jon alone?” Amy said.

“He’s a hypnotist,” Rory whispered.

“I am not deaf,” Jon said.

“Why don’t you both stay here,” the Doctor said.

“We have had this conversation,” Angela said. “I will not travel with you alone ever

again.”

“It wasn’t that bad, was it?” the Doctor asked.

“What did you do to her?” Amy demanded.

“Nothing,” the Doctor said.

“What did he do to you?” Amy asked.

“I do not wish to discuss it,” Angela said.

“Can I go?” Jon asked.

“No,” Angela said.

“Sorry,” the Doctor said. “Amy? Angela?”

Rory offered an ambivalent hand gesture. Angela was the last to enter, and she pushed

the door shut behind her.

“Have fun storming the castle,” Loxy yelled after him.

Rory observed Jon presumably looking at Loxy. The TARDIS faded away, even the

sound it made, echoed into the forest and faded, gone.

“What did she say?” Rory asked.

“Oh, nothing,” Jon said.

“It was funny,” Loxy said.

The sound of the TARDIS was distinctly heard.

“That was fast,” Rory said.

Then there were dozens of TARDIS sounds, like an echo but not an echo, moving over

head, as mimicry birds departed the area. The mimicry birds were hard to see because they

looked just like clusters of leaves. It was only when they took flight they could be distinctly seen.

Rory gave the remaining Avatars a worried smile.

“Maybe it won’t stick?” Rory asked.

The TARDIS returned. Amy and Angela were first out, wearing different clothes.

“How long were you gone?” Rory asked.

34

“Oh, um, two days,” Amy said.

“Two days to plant a seed?” Rory asked.

The Doctor emerged. “See, I told you I would get us back within five minutes,” the

Doctor said. He rushed a tree. “Look at her! She’s beautiful,” He said, and ran to hug a tree.

“That’s the tree you planted?” Rory said.

“Yes,” Angela said, admiring the tree just as much as the Doctor. “Come closer, Jon.”

Jon shook his head, ‘no.’

“But that tree was always there!” Rory said.

“No, no, it wasn’t here, but you and Jon wouldn’t remember that, because, well, how

long have you been traveling with me?” the Doctor said.

“This is why Jon needed to remain present. This tree is now a multiplicity point,” Angela

said. “A convergence of paradoxical eventualities. Jon, come closer, please. We have to finish

the process.”

“I am afraid,” Jon said.

“Is Loxy still beside you?” the Doctor asked.

Jon was disturbed by the fact he hadn’t noticed her absence. The tree seemed suddenly

far away. The Doctor and Angela sounded far away. Amy and Rory were momentarily filling his

vision, distorted as if seen through a fish lens through a peephole on the door. They fell up and away. He experienced the earth rising up to his knees, as opposed to falling. Amy and Rory were

suddenly at his side, in contact, bigger than life, taller than even the Avatars, preventing his total collapse. He protested, but the Doctor and Angela insisted they bring him to the tree, sounding

urgent. They helped him towards the tree. The four of them helped him hugged the tree. From

one perspective, Jon might have been supporting the tree, in the other, the tree was clearly

supporting him.

“The circuit is now complete,” Angela said.

The Doctor rushed to get Amy and Rory’s hands off of Jon. Once Jon started to glow,

they retreated on their own. The tree, also began to glow. Jon screamed, hugging the tree as best he could, staring straight up into the branches, light ejected from his eyes. When the light faded, so did his voice. He fell backwards to the earth. Rory went to catch him, but Angela and the

Doctor blocked. Loxy emerged from the tree, like a ghost, passing through a wall, and solidified.

She instantly went to Jon’s side.

35

“Seriously?” Loxy asked, looking to the Doctor. “Help him.”

Amy pushed Rory and he went to Jon’s aid. “Jon, can you hear me?” Rory asked, shaking

him. He felt for a pulse, found it, and listened for breathing. “He’s breathing.”

“Jon?” Loxy said.

“Doctor?” Amy said.

“Give him a moment. He has to remember,” the Doctor said.

“Remember what?” Loxy asked.

“Everything,” the Doctor said. “Regenerating isn’t just like rebooting a computer. You

re-experience your entire life.”

“That could take what, forty something years?” Amy asked.

“He’s fifty,” Loxy said.

“Oh,” Amy said. “He looks good for fifty.”

“It’s not about time,” Angela said. “Space/time is an illusion. You can re-experience a

lifetime in an instant, because time is subjective within the mind. The brain itself receives

information from its senses, all the information, past, future, present, but’s it’s way too much

information, and too complexly woven together for the Avatar to process. The personality splits

into a subconscious mind and the conscious mind. The subconscious mind only allows certain

information to flow through the personality filters.”

“Why would it limit us?” Amy said.

“To protect you, to guide you, to keep you from being overwhelmed,” the Doctor said.

“Focus on a tree, any tree, just one. Are you aware that there are flowers in the periphery of your vision?”

Amy turned to follow it, but the flowers were gone.

“Don’t chase it, focus on a single tree,” the Doctor said. “We’re surrounded, daily, by

flowers, by lights, by people, by sounds you can’t hear, by colors you can’t see. There are cities in the clouds above us. And it’s because, time is an illusion, persistent, as my friend Albert

would say, but still it is an illusion. Your filters allow you to function. My filters let a lot more stuff in, not because I am particularly gifted, but because I had time to learn to see. If you lived as long I have, you would start to see the worlds are much more amazing than your daily

experience.”

“Humans use to live as long as the Gallifreyans,” Angela said.

36

“I know,” the Doctor said.

“What happened?” Amy asked.

“Long story,” the Doctor said.

“Why is it taking so long?” Loxy demanded.

“The story?” the Doctor asked. “Well, it’s kind of convoluted…”

“Not the story!” Loxy snapped. “The recovery.”

“Oh, I don’t know. Maybe he has to remember something very specific,” the Doctor said.

“Like what?” Loxy asked.

“Being alone,” Angela said.

“You said we would be integrally linked for eternity,” Loxy said. “From the first leaf I

pushed, you promised me, you taught me, that everything was going to be okay.”

“And it is,” Angela said.

“How is this okay?!” Loxy said.

“What do you mean, she taught you?” Amy asked.

“I grew up here,” Loxy said. “With the Avatars of Ever. They have taught me

everything.”

“Not everything,” Angela said. “Just everything you could learn in the time you had.”

“Do you remember your life with Jon?” the Doctor asked.

“I do. It’s weird though. It’s almost as if he lived in my dreams, as if he were my Tulpa,

and not the other way around,” Loxy said.

“Do you remember anything else?” the Doctor asked.

“As a Tree of Ever, I am just a baby, only 24. As a Tree of Ever, I could live here tens of

thousands of years, and already I have had many Avatars, many incarnations, branching out into

the Universe,” Loxy said. “More dreams than I could ever remember. I have noticed themes.

Music and overall life patterns. Jon is spread throughout my walks in nature, all ages of him.”

Loxy stood. “You’re there, too. Oh, oh,” Loxy said, and started laughing. She clapped her hands,

stood. She twirled taking in the world. “This is so rich. It’s comical even. I think, I am going to be the death of you. Oh, no. It’s bigger than even that. Oh! I am the Doctor!”

“Seriously?” Jon asked. “You’re gone from my head like five whole minutes and you’re

having delusions of grandeur?”

37

“Oh!” Loxy said, and fell on him, kissing him. She was laughing at first, and then crying.

She punched him the shoulder, and then pulled him up to a sitting positioned and hugged him,

sitting on his lap.

“I don’t think she’s quite stable,” Amy said.

“Ahh, she’ll be alright,” the Doctor said.

“Doctor, if she is really Clara, I’d like to remind you, she was incarcerated on a Dahlek

prison world because they thought she was crazy,” Amy said.

“Yeah, but she crashed there. And they made her Dahlek. That could make anyone

crazy,” the Doctor said. “This is normal. It’s takes time to properly transition into a new body.”

“24 years isn’t sufficient?” Amy asked,

Loxy stopped kissing Jon, as if recognizing a peculiar feeling. She smiled. “I am hungry,”

Loxy announced.

“Pizza?” Jon asked.

“Not that kind of hungry,” Loxy said, giving him the look.

“Oh,” Jon said.

Rory looked away from them. “I think they’re good.”

“Is there a place we can be a lone for a while?” Loxy asked. “He and I really need to

talk.”

“You know there is no solitude in the forest,” Angela said.

“It’s a human convention,” Loxy said.

“What is?” the Doctor asked.

Rory whispered it.

“Ah,” the Doctor said. “Oh, hold on. Can’t this wait?”

“This is necessary to facilitate stability,” Angela said.

“We’ll just go inside the TARDIS for a while,” the Doctor said. “We won’t leave you.”

As Angela, Amy, Rory, and the Doctor retreated into the TARDIS, the other Avatars

faded away. Mimicry birds sang the song of the TARDIS. In the midst, some of the birds

recalled a secondary theme, blending it with the TARDIS and rustling of leaves.

38

Chapter 4

The Doctor paced around the console. “How long has it been now?”

“Doctor, you can’t rush these things,” Angela said.

“Yes, you can,” the Doctor said. “Rory, how long does it take.”

“Oh, that’s just not acceptable in any context,” Rory said.

“If I seem to recall,” Amy began.

“Amy,” Rory warned.

“It’s not about you,” Amy said. “The first time we met, Doctor, it took you several hours

before you were properly satiated.”

“You had sex the first time you met the Doctor?” Angela asked.

“I was a child,” Amy said, as if that was sufficient explanation.

“That’s really disturbing, Doctor, even for you,” Angela said.

“How could you even think such a thing!” the Doctor said. “I was hungry. For food.”

The door to the TARDIS opened. Loxy, hair mussed, bare shouldered, leaned in. “Could

you guys make a pizza run? We’re like starving out here.”

“Would a frozen do?” Rory asked.

“Oh, that would be lovely, thanks,” Loxy said, and popped back out.

“What was it you ended up liking? Fish fingers and custard?” Amy asked.

“You ate the fingers off of fish?" Angela asked.

“Fish don’t have fingers,” the Doctor said.

“Because you ate them?” Angela said.

“Oh, come on. Enough with the distractions. Aren’t any of you intrigued that Loxy looks

exactly like Clara!” the Doctor said.

“I never met Clara in person,” Rory said.

“Have you?” Amy said.

“I am still sorting,” the Doctor said.

“Sorting what?” Amy asked.

“Like, who is the real Clara?” the Doctor said. “How is it that she is so impossibly

mysterious and all over the place?”

“Oh, I have seen that look before,” Angela said. “You’re in love with Loxy.”

39

Amy crossed her arms in front of her chest. “You are married to my daughter, Doctor.”

“I am not in love with Clara. I mean, Loxy. Or Clara. She’s a mystery, that’s all. And I

love mysteries,” the Doctor said. “Which doesn’t preclude I love Clara or Loxy, but I don’t love

them! I don’t even know them. I am trying to know them.”

“I’m interested in the fact she called herself the Doctor,” Rory said.

“She’s clearly insane,” Amy said. “She can’t be the Doctor.”

“Why not?” Angela said. “Females can be doctors.”

“They can’t be THE Doctor,” Amy said.

“Oh, I so want to meet a female Doctor,” Rory said.

“I bet,” Amy said.

“Oh, more than ever now. I would run off with her and let you stew alone, worrying about

what I am up to,” Rory said.

“I wouldn’t worry,” Amy said.

“Oh, yes you would,” Rory said.

“No, I wouldn’t. You would never do anything. Even if she was cute,” Amy said. “Even if

you were compelled by circumstances, like a plot contrivance where if you didn’t do that very

something she would die, and you still wouldn’t do it.”

“To save her life? I so would,” Rory said.

“Yeah? You would make out with the female Doctor, knowing that the last time you

traveled with her she was a him?” Amy asked.

Rory thought it through. He closed his eyes. “You won’t even let me engage in a

hypothetical fantasy?”

“Don’t have to fantasize,” Amy said. “He’s right there. Go ahead. Kiss him, get it out of

your system.”

“I am going to go heat a pizza,” Rory said, and left the room.

“Men are so easy,” Amy said.

“You’ve clearly kissed the Doctor,” Angela said. “Is it out of your system?”

Amy silently fumed, pushing her tongue against her teeth, as if counting them.

“I don’t understand the hypothetical,” the Doctor said. “He would save me, or he

wouldn’t? And how does being cute figure into this equation?”

40

“I will let you two figure it out when it happens,” Amy said. “I’ll be in my room if you need me.”

The Doctor looked to Angela. “Humans.”

“I did tell you, you would not find the answers you are looking for,” Angela said, heading

towards the kitchen and Rory.

“So, why did you agree to give Loxy a Tree and an Avatar so easily?” the Doctor said.

“Because we have done it before. Jon and Loxy are the Guardians of Ever,” Angela said.

“What?” the Doctor asked.

“The Earth has you. We have them,” Angela said. “I think we got the better deal.”

Angela departed.

“Wait. Where are you going?” the Doctor asked.

“I don’t want to be alone with you,” Angela said.

“It wasn’t that bad?!” the Doctor called after her, but she was already gone. “Was it?”

निनमित

Jon and Loxy entered the TARDIS, finding the Doctor pacing.

“Oh, good, all better now?” the Doctor asked.

“We’re famished,” Loxy said, pulling Jon towards the direction of the kitchen.

“But, we need to talk,” the Doctor said.

Jon kind of shrugged, and pointed he was going with her.

“Oh, come on,” the Doctor said, following. “Jon, grow a back bone.”

“We can talk with food,” Loxy shouted back. “Which way to the kitchen?”

“Right, then left, oh, it’ll be faster if you let me lead,” the Doctor said.

The kitchen, interestingly enough, was the only room with a window. The window looked

out onto a pleasant morning, somewhere in the universe. It tended to be something different

every time a person entered; it would stay on that something until reset by being an empty room.

It was never made clear whether or not one could escape out that window into the world being

viewed, or if was just an image, like a back drop on the stage of some obscure talk show host’s

stage. There was a rumor, started by Loxy, that it was a window that revealed how distant worlds

were intricately linked in the present. There was a table and chairs. A bar. A lavatory. An island.

Space cabinets and drawers that secured, and a pain in the ass to open if you didn’t know the

trick, and even then, sometimes still difficult. A stasis box for a refrigerator, meaning that items 41

were permanently preserved from decay. Rory was on a lounge drinking a coffee. Angela was stirring a cup of something hot, leaning against the island. On the table was a frozen pizza,

Chicago cut. Loxy went right to the pizza, actually sat on the table next to it and helped herself.

“Oh, thank you Rory, this is great,” Loxy said.

“Sorry, I kind of overcooked it,” Rory said.

“It’s perfect!” Loxy said. “It’s exactly how Jon cooks. We like burned edges and crunch.”

“He burns pizza?” Angela asked.

“Yeah, pretty much burns everything. And you can’t let him boil eggs. He times travels a

lot in his head and exploding eggs bring him back to present,” Loxy said.

“Exploded eggs make such a mess,” Jon said, sitting in the chair directly in front of Loxy,

reaching past her to take his own slice. “Which could be evidence for a greater reality not being a dream.” He took a bite, but looked like he was going to continue with his thought. Loxy put her

feet in the chair, either side of him, leaning over to wipe some sauce off his face. “Needs salt.”

“You’re going to start cutting back, now that I have more say,” Loxy said, rocking his

chair to and fro. Another bite of pizza and she nearly made her special face. “OMG, seriously!

Jon, tell me this isn’t the best pizza ever.”

“Technically, your first pizza ever, with only my memory of pizza to go on?” Jon asked.

“There’s that,” Loxy said, her eyes going up as she sorted, bobbin her head to a song no

one else could here. “No, this is just awesome. Almost as good as our tumble!”

“I agree,” Jon said. “Still needs salt.”

“Everything is better and brighter after a regeneration,” Angela said.

“So, this isn’t going to last?” Jon asked.

“Nothing lasts,” Rory said.

“Oh,” Loxy said. “Are you depressed?”

“How are you not Clara?” the Doctor demanded.

“Oh, I suppose I could be, if you’re really going to be persistent about it,” Loxy said with

a sigh. And then a laugh. “I suppose, if we’re throwing around fantasies, I could also be a cosmic waitress, bringing joy and respite to weary travelers straying off the beaten path. Oh, Jon! We

could so do a metaphysical, hippie, mystic pizza kind of traveling thing. We steal a TARDIS and

make it look like the Scooby Doo Mystery van…”

42

“You want to be a waitress?” Jon asked.

“A cosmic waitress. If the outfit is cute,” Loxy said. “I do like hosting. Pretty sure I like

hosting. OMG, Jon, you and I are going to have some tremendous parties.”

“I am not really fond of parties,” Jon said.

“That’s because I wasn’t there to host,” Loxy said.

“Jon, when did you create your Tulpa?’ the Doctor asked.

“People don’t create Tulpas,” Angela said. “They invite existing personalities into their

lives.”

“Jon’s paradigm; on Earth, they make them from scratch,” the Doctor said. “How long

ago?”

“Is it like playing Dungeons and Dragons, creating character, only without the dice?”

Rory asked.

Jon shook his head to Rory, but looked to Loxy to try and sort the Doctor’s question.

“What, just over two years ago?”

“I will be cross if you’ve forgotten my designated birthday,” Loxy said.

“I would never forget your birthday,” Jon said.

“You’ve forgotten my birthday,” Loxy said.

“Remind me,” Jon said. Based on the look she was giving him, he wasn’t the only one

who had forgotten. “You’ve forgotten it, too?”

“That’s really odd,” Loxy said.

“Like it’s stuck on the tip of your tongue, but you can’t get it out?” Angela asked.

“Yeah,” Jon and Loxy both said. “Oh,” Loxy added. “I love when we do that together.”

“Yeah, the information has been temporarily blocked to preserve the Continuity of the

One.”

“Please, Angela, your metaphysical philosophy isn’t going to help us sort this properly.

Rory, what were we doing two years ago?” the Doctor asked.

“I thought you never forget,” Loxy said.

“I don’t. I just, sometimes, need a little jog to the noggin,” the Doctor said.

“Shall I hit you?” Angela asked.

“You really need to get over whatever it is you think I did to you,” the Doctor said.

43

Angela nearly said something but Jon interrupted. “Are the women in your life always this aggressive?”

“Jon. You can’t be a snowflake around the Doctor,” Loxy said. “Clearly, things get hot.”

“Things don’t get hot. I mean, some things get hot, but, no you’re twisting things. Do you

always make everything into sexual innuendos?” the Doctor asked.

“It’s a hazard of living in Jon’s head,” Loxy said.

“Sorry,” Jon said.

“It’s quite alright. More people do that than admit that,” Loxy said.

“Sex or innuendos?” Rory said.

“Oh, I love you, Rory. You know, we should have like a couple’s night out, the four of

us,” Loxy said, taking another slice of pizza.

“The six of us,” Jon said.

“Oh, they’re not a couple,” Loxy said, indicating the Doctor and Angela. “Besides, you

really don’t want to take the Doctor on a date, unless you want to do some running. Angela told

me some stories about the Doctor while growing up on Ever.”

The Doctor paced around the table. “This is not right. I feel like I am the companion. How

did I end up being just an off character in someone else’s story, in my own TARDIS,” the Doctor

said.

“You have a hard time letting others shine, don’t you,” Angela said.

“No! I love it when other people shine. I encourage people to shine. Loxy, who the hell

are you?! Where did you come from?” the Doctor said.

Loxy pointed to Jon.

“Jon,” the Doctor said. “Does she look exactly like you imagined her?”

Jon bit his lip.

“Spit it out,” Loxy said.

Jon spit the bite of pizza out into his hand.

“Not the pizza, your thoughts,” Loxy said.

Jon put the pizza back in his mouth, chewed, and swallowed.

“OMG. It’s a simple question, Jon,” Loxy said.

“You’re everything I hoped for,” Jon said.

44

“Singing that will not get you out of the question,” Loxy said. “Do I look like you imagined me?”

“More or less,” Jon said.

“Which is it, the more or the less,” Loxy said.

“This is really not a fair question. I’m not good at visualization,” Jon said. “I am more an

auditory person.”

“She doesn’t look like what you remembered,” Rory said. “But you slept with her

anyway?”

Jon kind of shrugged.

“Are you disappointed?” Loxy asked.

“With the sex or your looks?” Jon asked.

“OMG, why is this so difficult?” Loxy asked.

“Because neither of you are communicably telepathically at the moment,” Angela said.

“Are you disappointed with me?” Loxy asked.

“No, not at all. You’re absolutely lovely. You are lovelier than I can ever have imagined.

You are even more intense and more loving in person and I love you,” Jon said.

“You’re just saying that?” Loxy said.

“Are you doubting?” Jon asked.

“Yes,” Loxy said, disturbed and then suddenly shiny. “OMG, I can have my own doubts!

This is great. It sucks, and it’s great. Wait, wait, wait! Who did you imagine I looked like?”

“Alizée,” Jon admitted.

“Oh,” Loxy said. “We like her. She can really move.”

“So can you,” Jon said.

“Jon. You could have chosen anyone from history, but you somehow tuned into Clara,”

the Doctor said.

“I don’t understand the question,” Jon said.

“Why not Marilyn Monroe? Everyone loves Marilyn,” the Doctor asked.

“Well, I like her looks and all, but I didn’t want to have that birthday song stuck in my

head for the rest of my life,” Jon said.

“Oh, I liked that one,” the Doctor said. “I was married to her, you know?”

“Oh! Yes, mystery solved,” Jon and Loxy said together.

45

“What mystery?” the Doctor asked.

“She told us,” Jon said.

“She told you she was married to me?” the Doctor asked.

“Well, it didn’t make sense at the time. She said she married the Doctor. I asked which

Doctor, and she said not a witch doctor, and I thought oh, she was just having a bit of fun with

us,” Jon said.

“You met Marilyn Monroe?” Rory asked. “I thought you were from my time frame.”

“He is. They’re just having fun at our expense,” the Doctor said.

“I would never do that, Doctor,” Jon said.

“Where did you meet her?” the Doctor asked.

“We had a stay at the Roosevelt Hotel. She visited us in our room,” Loxy said.

“Really?” Rory asked. “You time traveled.”

“No, she’s a ghost,” Loxy said.

“I don’t believe in ghost,” the Doctor said.

“How can you not believe in ghosts?” Jon asked.

“I have investigated a lot of ghost stories, and it’s never ghosts,” the Doctor said.

“Until it’s ghosts,” Jon said.

“It’s more likely an alien,” the Doctor said.

“Why would an alien pretend to be Marilyn Monroe?” Jon asked.

“Oh, that depends on the alien,” the Doctor said. “Some lure people in to eat them. Some

to make them host to offspring. Some, like the Grays, they just have very high libidos and trade

and sell exotic reproductive materials.”

“It could have been the Grays,” Loxy said.

“We really did enjoy her company,” Jon agreed. “No, that can’t be it.”

“Why not?” the Doctor asked.

“Because, it doesn’t make any sense. The grays don’t have to trick me into sex. I’d give it

up just to say I had sex with the Grays.”

“I’ll vouch for him on that one,” Loxy said. “He’s being straight up with you. He’d

probably sleep with you for a spin in the TARDIS.”

Jon sorted, but didn’t argue, returned to pizza.

46

“Would you both stop with innuendos and focus on this problem with me,” the Doctor

said.

“You two just float around life visiting haunted hotels?” Rory asked.

“If you’re going to push boundaries to test the limits of reality, you can’t just sit there at

home and hope things come to you,” Jon said.

“That’s how it works for me,” Rory said.

“You should invite us over,” Loxy said.

“Well, no, Loxy. I don’t think they’re dealing in the same kind of ghosts,” Jon said. “That

said, Doctor, maybe you should take us home now.”

“In time. I want to figure this out,” the Doctor said.

“Yeah, but, you seem a bit obsessed, and your friends seem a bit on edge, and I am

starting to worry something bad might happen,” Jon said.

“You afraid? I have never heard you say that. You’re the kind of guy that goes towards

shadows,” Loxy said.

“That’s because, the light is on the other side,” Jon said.

“Good point. What are you especially worrying about presently?” Loxy asked.

“Everything. I mean, the absolute best part of my life has been you, and it just got better

by you being realer than real, and, well, there is a reason for that saying it can’t get better than this,” Jon said. “I want to be somewhere predictably safe for a while so I can just spend my days with you.”

“I love you,” Loxy said. “Whatever comes, we will tackle it together. Besides, I can’t go

back to Earth.”

“Can’t or don’t want to?” Jon said.

“Oh, I want to go wherever you go, but Earth is going to be problematic in my present

form. You know how perturbed people get when you don’t have a verifiable history,” Loxy said.

“Down right obsessed,” Jon agreed.

“I am not obsessed,” the Doctor said.

“I suppose, I could incarnate on Earth. But, I’d have to find the right parents, in the right

time zone to better ensure a high probability that we can encounter each other,” Loxy said.

“You know my address,” Jon said. “And you know the code to get in.”

47

“Sorry, Jon,” Angela said. “There are rules against that. Though the Trees of Ever may

send Avatars to help sister planets through times of trial, those Avatars must agree to a full life cycle, with amnesia.”

“I don’t like that rule,” Jon said.

“It’s like the prime directive,” Loxy said.

“I am not Star Fleet,” Jon pointed out.

“The rule is a convention established for all advanced beings participating within the

Federation,” the Doctor said. “Whether it’s the Prime Directive, or the Temporal Code of Ethics

of not divulging information sets prior to their allotted time, we all abide by the intent of the treaty, if not the precise legal wording.”

“Well, that’s just stupid,” Jon said. “How can you expect volunteers to help if they have

their minds wiped before inserting them into the time line?”

“The fronting personality may not know the specifics, but the subconscious knows

everything,” Angela said. “And the one thing that no one can forget is love trumps everything.”

“Jon, we are beings of Love and Light,” Loxy said. “Anyone can Love when everything

is perfect. It’s harder to love when things are not perfect. How can you ever know if you have

mastered Love if you never step off into imperfection, knowingly not knowing?”

“It didn’t take her long to take up your philosophy,” the Doctor said.

“She has always had our philosophy,” Angela said. “She has always been one of us.”

The Doctor slapped the table, startling Jon. “That’s it!” he said, spinning his chair around.

“Why didn’t I think of that earlier?”

“Please don’t do that,” Jon said.

“Rory, get up, please,” the Doctor said. “Loxy, on the lounge, please.”

“Is that an offer or an innuendo?” Loxy asked.

“Haven’t you both had enough?” the Doctor asked.

“Never,” Jon and Loxy both said, simultaneously.

Loxy came off the table. She kissed Jon before going to sit on the lounge.

48

Chapter 5

Loxy made herself comfortable on the lounge. More precisely, she made herself comfortable

‘posing’ on the lounge, as if this were a photo shoot, and she was just having a fun day at the

office. This was not a behavior unknown to Jon, as she often was playfully engaging him or the

environment in his head to cheer him up, or to help him be more observant. When she was a

‘ghost’ she could manipulate objects, even bring them to him, but the original object just

remained in place. It was in this way Jon realized a thing about reality that most people don’t

realize: there was the world out there, and there was a world in his head, an exact duplicate, with all the objects placed. Rarely people, unless you got really far out and away from approximation

world. Except for cats. Cats seemed to be quite happy in the approximation world. From

approximation, one could leap to any other place in the known universe. He only need close his

eyes, and Loxy and he were in his own private approximation, minus cats, and any door could

take them beyond. In the inner world he could interact with Loxy, touch her. They could hold

hands and walk through any doorway and end up in any future or past world, usually only as

observers, manipulating the inner world, not interacting with the out worlds or the personalities that dwelt there, as if they were visiting a movie. On very rare occasions, they found themselves in those ‘movie’ frame, interacting as if they had always been there. Those were the times when

Jon and Loxy felt compelled to help someone who was in crisis. Sometimes, they found

themselves in Jon’s past, helping a younger incarnation of himself. The first time they did this, they realized they had changed his internal timeline, even though the external time line remained the same.

Looking at Loxy now, Jon wanted to engage her. He suspected she knew, because she

even gave him the look, raised eyebrows, stuck her tongue out at him, but due to the presence of

others, he had restraint. Probably because the others were also seeing what he was seeing. It was a peculiar feeling knowing people were now interacting with the person he had held to himself

for so long. It was as if he suddenly had evidence that he wasn’t completely crazy, because this

was now real. That feeling of relief and elation just revved up his feelings of love, and that

always influenced libido. He came back to the present moment when he realized he was being

observed. The exchanges he and Loxy had made subtly weren’t so subtle, and she was feeling

the same tangents as he.

49

“Is this what you two do all day?” the Doctor asked.

“Probably not a whole lot to do, hanging out in someone’s head,” Rory said.

“You’d be surprised,” Loxy asked.

“I lived over two thousand years, mostly kept to myself, thought a lot about Amy, and I

didn’t get an Amy tulpa,” Rory said.

“Well, you have to follow some protocols,” Jon said. “I could teach you.”

“No need. He went two thousand years focused on Amy, I assure you, he has a solid Amy

Tulpa in his head,” Loxy said.

“It wasn’t precisely 2,000 years,” Amy corrected, having entered the kitchen, but hanging

back.

“1,894,” Rory said. “I think after waiting for you that long, I am entitled to rounding up.”

“How lonely was that?!” Loxy said, sitting up straight. “Jon and I can teach you

tulpamancy, so you can have better access to the tulpas in your head.”

“Probably not a good idea,” Rory said.

“We all have tulpas in our heads,” Jon said.

“Everyone we have ever met,” Angela said. “Even people we have never met. The human

brains is the best personality simulator evolution has ever put together.”

“Yeah, and I still don’t think it a good idea to unlock what’s in my head,” Rory said.

“Because you’re afraid that the Amy in your head will be different than the Amy in real

life,” Loxy assumed out loud.

“Or, because he imagines an affair with the tulpa Amy would be a distraction from the

real Amy,” Jon assumed.

“Oh, that is a valid worry,” Loxy agreed. “Which could result in dissatisfaction in real

life.”

“Or at least incongruity disturbances,” Jon said.

“Or jealousies,” Loxy said. “Yeah, you got to be really solid with who you are and solid

in your relationships to really navigate tulpamancy.”

“I am not jealous. I would have understood if he had a friend or two,” Amy said. “No one

should go two thousand years without a friend.”

“I thought our free pass situation was a hypothetical, and a secret?” Rory said.

50

“They need to know, if you travel with the Doctor long enough, situations happen.

Everyone should have a free pass. Like, waiting 2,000 years,” Amy said.

“See, even you round up, when talking about it,” Rory pointed out.

“It’s easier to say two thousand,” Amy said.

“But you give me hell when I say it,” Rory said.

“Because when you say it, it sounds like you’re exaggerating for sympathy,” Amy said.

“I went 1,894 years carrying the stiff upper lip; I think I have earned some medals and the

right to express myself,” Rory said.

“And you can, it just, every time you tell this it sounds kind of whiny, like you’re trying to

impress people,” Amy said.

“I’m impressed,” Loxy said. “You’re not impressed?”

“I am impressed. I married him,” Amy said. “What more can I do?”

“Sex,” Jon and Loxy said. “Oh, lots of sex.”

“We have sex,” Amy said.

“Angry sex?” Jon asked.

“Jon,” Loxy said, as if she were going to correct him. “Would that stop you?”

“Oh, no, angry sex is good,” Jon said.

“We should teach them both tulpamancy so they can engaged their inner others so they

can understand why there is so much discord,” Loxy said.

“I don’t want to unlock things because there are monsters in my head,” Rory said.

“Oh, we love monsters,” Loxy said. “Jon and I can help with monsters, especially the

inner ones. They can be a real pain in the ass, but once you get to know them, they chill.”

“We don’t need more monsters in our lives,” Amy said.

“Oh, see, they’re both struggling,” Loxy said. “Jon, we got to help them. Maybe that’s

why we’re here! To subdue their miscreant tulpae.”

“Tulpas is the correct plural,” Jon said.

“There is no consensus on that,” Loxy said.

“You can’t Latinize every word,” Jon said.

“Rory, what do you think?” Loxy asked.

“I am biased,” Rory said.

“No, not latinizing the word tulpa,” Jon said.

51

“Why not?” Loxy said.

“One, you’re not Roman. Two, the word originated in Asia. And, ummm…” Jon said.

“Come on, rule of three, say it,” Loxy said.

Jon turns back to Rory. “Everybody has tulpas. Tulpas are just thought forms. Everything

in your head is a thought form. Everything. Objects. Social facts. Archetypes. Trees. You’d be

surprised how many trees are in our heads. Robert Frost’s Trees. Generalized tree. Species of

trees! You have all the past trees you have ever met in your head. They’re all in your head all the time, even when you’re not really focused on trees. You can see them as metaphors, or real trees.

You call them memories. Our ideas about people and places can be so solidly real that any

divergence from our ideas of a person or place compared to the real outside person or place

provokes strong emotions. Anger, sadness. We like our ideas of things to be accurate, because

we feel bad when we’re off. Your idea of Amy is solid, perfect, she is a goddess and no one can

compete with that, and that, Sir, is how you endured 2,000 years! I am sure there were some

women who threw themselves at you over that 2,000 years. You have really good teeth, and that

would impress the girls in the past. Hell, I’d be surprised if those girls who experience

unrequited love started up their own secret Amy Goddess club. Seriously, no one can compete

with a goddess, and so you’re either loving the goddess directly, starting a fan club, a love fan club or a hate fan club, doesn’t make any difference because it’s still a club to the goddess. All that psychic energy just makes her more real because you get enough people thinking about a

goddess, she manifests herself. Trust me, I know. I live with one. But here’s the trick. When you finally meet up with the goddess in real life, you got to let go of the one in your head, because people have flaws, and they’re not going meet up with our expectations. Just something to think

about.”

“That actually makes a lot of sense to me,” Rory said.

“He’s good, isn’t he?” Loxy agreed.

“Almost a Doctor,” Amy said. “How come you don’t talk to us like this?”

“I talk to you two like this all the time,” the Doctor said.

“So, Doctor, where do we go from here?” Angela asked.

“We’re following your lead,” the Doctor said. “Psychic energy, the subconscious knows

everything. Jon, do your thing.”

52

Jon seemed hesitant. “What is my thing?”

“Yes, Jon, show us your thing,” Loxy said.

“Would you two behave for like five minutes?!” the Doctor asked.

“Of course. Sorry. Rory, would you clock that for us,” Loxy said.

“Jon, I want you to hypnotize Loxy,” the Doctor said.

“Okay,” Jon said. “So, what kind of fantasy would you like her to have?”

“Oh, send me back 2,000 years so I know what it’s like being Rory,” Loxy said. “Or put

me with Rory. I will stand by his side for 2,000 years.”

“Are you flirting with my husband?” Amy asked.

“Yes, you said you weren’t jealous and he was in a free pass situation,” Loxy said.

“Why do you need to create limits to loving relationship and then invent the pass game to

get out of the self imposed limits?” Angela asked.

“It’s just a hypothetical game,” Jon explained. “Cause you just never know when you

might be trapped between floors in a lift with Victoria Justice.”

“Yep, if she comes onto you in the lift, that’s an automatic free pass,” Loxy agreed.

“But, honest honey, she looked like Victoria,” Jon said.

“Oh, I’d give you that, too, if she initiates,” Loxy said.

“My husband is not in a lift with Victoria,” Amy said.

“But if I were?” Rory said.

“I’d kill you,” Amy said.

“Yeah, no jealousy here,” Rory said.

“But, we’re trapped in a lift and I am interested, only the lift is 2,000 years ago. He’s

cute. He’s patient and devoted as all get out,” Loxy said. “And seriously, I know he’s going to

turn me down and turning me down would just make me want it more. And, I am curious if he

can really go 2,000 years with a very persistent companion.”

“She can be very persistent,” Jon said.

“So can you,” Loxy said.

“We’re both pretty persistent,” Jon said.

“You can have him,” Amy said.

“I thought we were over this pushing me away bit,” Rory said.

53

“Please! I am so overwhelmed with all the fussing, and the talk about sex. There’s more to life to talk about than sex,” the Doctor said. “Jon! Just knock Loxy out so I can get at her

subconscious.”

“Yeah, cause that doesn’t sound like an inappropriate innuendo,” Amy said.

“Oh, those kinds are embedded everywhere,” Loxy said. “Like that Christmas song,

‘Baby, it’s cold outside.’” Loxy sang: “Hey, what’s in this drink?”

Jon folded his hands together, considering.

“What’s wrong?” Loxy asked. “Did I get the song stuck in your head?”

“No, yeah, it’s okay. It just occurred to me that I have not done a proper hypnosis

session,” Jon said. “I am not sure exactly how to proceed.”

“Oh, just relax, go to it, when you want to go to it,” Loxy said.

“Please, two songs track in my head at once is distracting,” Jon said.

“You’ve only done erotic hypnosis?” Amy asked. “Who teaches that?”

“No one that I know of,” Jon said. “I just kind of fell into it.”

“Just make her relax, and then, take her deeper,” the Doctor said.

“It’s hard not to engage in innuendo, isn’t it?” Loxy asked.

“I am not engaging!” the Doctor said.

“That’s why there is so much sexual tension around you,” Loxy said. “How long have you

gone without?”

“We are not going there,” the Doctor said. “Jon, please, this is important.”

“Alright,” Jon said.

He scooted his chair closer to Loxy. He asked her to sit up properly, feet on the floor,

hands in her lap. He held up a finger and asked her to stare at it.

“It’s smaller on the outside,” Loxy said.

Jon closed his eyes, sorting his feelings. Amy covered her mouth. Rory chewed on a

thumbnail.

“Come on, Jon, that was funny,” Loxy said.

“Stay focused,” the Doctor said.

Jon took a deep breath, opened his eyes, and asked Loxy to focus on the finger. He asked

her to keep staring at it, even as he was drawing closer to her. The trick was to have the person follow his finger back and forth several times, as if establishing an REM pattern, then moved it

54

up, drawing the eyes up, and by the time he had touched their forehead, they were in trance. He didn’t get that far. He passed out. His head fell into Loxy’s lap.

Angela laughed. “Doctor, I am telling you, you’re spinning your wheels,” she said.

“Jon, darling,” Loxy said, petting his head. “Wake up, please.”

Jon sat up, yawning. “So, how’d it go?”

“You hypnotized yourself,” Loxy said.

“Really? How did that happen?” Jon asked.

“You and Loxy are integrally linked,” Angela reminded them. “You’re like two mirrors

facing each other. Infinite regression. What you do to the other you do to yourself. That’s not an intentional innuendo or a metaphor. Jon, on the lounge with Loxy, please. Doctor, may I borrow

your psychic paper?”

The Doctor fished out the item and handed it to her.

“Alright, here’s how this work,” Angela said, taking the chair that Jon had previously

occupied.

When Jon was settled it became apparent to him that Angela seemed more normal in size,

no longer a giant. He tried to remember when she had shrunk, but couldn’t place it.

“Am I dreaming?” Jon asked.

“What do you think changed?” Loxy asked.

“Angela seems to have shrunk?” Jon said.

“I adjusted the size of my Avatar to fit this reality frame,” Angela said.

“Oh, okay,” Jon said. “Please continue.”

“I am going to ask you a question, then I will present the answer to you. You will read

the answer out loud. Okay?”

“Clear enough,” Loxy and Jon said. Loxy laughed, took his hand and kissed him. “That’s

so cool.” She scooted even closer to him. “You’re much warmer in person than I expected.”

“Focus,” the Doctor said.

“Just out of curiosity, do you also need to use the toilet?” Jon asked.

“That is absolutely amazing!” Loxy said. “May we be excused for a moment? What?

How can we focus when the urge to pee is so pressing?”

“I don’t remember ever having this much trouble getting through a task,” the Doctor said.

“That’s because you usually ignore our hints we need to go,” Amy said.

55

“What? You have to raise your hand and ask permission?” the Doctor asked. “You just

go when you got to go.”

Loxy raised her hand.

“Just go already,” the Doctor said.

“We don’t know where the John is,” Loxy said.

“I really don’t like that term,” Jon said.

“The head?” Loxy asked. “What do you call it, Doctor? The Lou?”

“This way,” Rory said.

“No, really, what it do we call it?” Loxy asked.

“The Universal,” Amy said. “There’s some urinals, some stalls. Don’t use the last stall,

though. It’s really not designed for humans.”

“You never know when you will have Tarogatin guest,” the Doctor said.

“What’s a Tarogatin?” Jon asked.

“I thought you needed go?!” the Doctor asked.

“Urgently,” Loxy said.

Rory motioned for them to follow. Jon and Loxy followed.

“Seriously, Angela. I don’t think I have ever had any guests that were this difficult. Did

you coach them?” the Doctor said.

“Oh, if I were the type to practice revenge, it would take more than coaching,” Angela

said.

“What did he do to you?” Amy asked. It became obvious that the Doctor and Angela

were in their own world, and she was just a ghost eavesdropping.

“They’re like goofy teenagers in heat,” the Doctor said.

“Well, you were once a teenager,” Angela said. “A long time ago.”

“So were you, equally long ago,” the Doctor said. “But I was never like them.”

“Okay,” Angela agreed just to agree, even as the others were returning.

Rory returned without them. Amy asked how he had burned the pizza. Rory avoided a

real explanation by saying Jon and Loxy love it burned, and in this way, they had a conversation

overtop of Angela’s and the Doctor.

“Where are they?” the Doctor asked.

“Using the toilet?” Rory asked.

56

“Why didn’t you bring them back with you?” the Doctor demanded.

“Because, they can navigate back on their own. I mean it’s not that far off,” Rory said. “I